EGYPT: Death sentence for police officer who killed protesters
A criminal court in Cairo sentenced a police officer to death Sunday for killing protesters, the first death penalty imposed since the revolution that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak, Egyptian state TV (link in Arabic) reported Monday.
The court sentenced Mohammed Mahmud Abdul Mun'em in absentia for killing 20 protesters and wounding 15 more on Jan. 28, a day when hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets of Egypt.
The court found Mun'em had fired randomly at demonstrators, Nile TV said. Authorities have been unable to locate Mun'em, and it was not immediately clear what evidence had been presented against him.
Former Interior Minister Habib Adly was sentenced to 12 years in prison for corruption and faces a separate trial for his alleged role in ordering the killings of protesters. The trial of Adly and four aides was postponed Sunday until June 26 after families of the victims attempted to force their way into the courtroom north of Cairo, shouting of "Butcher!"
In a report issued earlier this month, the nonprofit advocacy organization Amnesty International estimated that at least 840 people were killed and more than 6,000 wounded during protests that led Mubarak to step down Feb. 11. Officials of the organization reported they found evidence that Egyptian security forces used excessive force against protesters, many of whom died from gunshot wounds to the head and chest.
-- Molly Hennessy-Fiske in Cairo
Photos, from top: An armored vehicle carries former Interior Minister Habib Adly away from court. Adly, already convicted of corruption, faces trial for his alleged role in ordering the killings of protesters. Credit: European Pressphoto Agency. Bottom: Still in power, Adly arrives at a regional meeting of interior ministers in Bahrain in September. Credit: Mazen Mahdi / European Pressphoto Agency